As many in the Wikimedia community are aware, the Wikimedia Foundation Board of Directors recently approved the creation of new models of affiliation known as thematic organizations and user groups. Thematic organizations are incorporated independent nonprofits that will support work focusing on a specific topic area within or across countries, regions and languages with certain permissions to use WMF marks. User groups are open membership groups which are granted limited use of Wikimedia marks for publicity related to events and projects. Both types of entities are unprecedented structures within the movement, and have the potential to move our mission forward in constructive and innovative ways.
One important feature of the new movement entity is the name under which it will operate, which is a key means for how it will present itself not just to the Wikimedia community but to the public. You can find my initial thoughts on naming the Thematic organizations talk page here and I’ve elaborated on those thoughts here. Other views can be found elsewhere on the talk page.
The new entities will help represent the movement and so the decisions we make in these initial stages may be of interest to many. In recognition of the fact that our community consists of many thoughtful and diverse voices, we invite and encourage everyone to participate in the discussion on naming models for new entities.
Geoff Brigham, General Counsel, Wikimedia Foundation